Member Spotlight: PaintCare Inc.

PaintCare Inc., a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, represents paint manufacturers (paint producers) who plan and operate paint stewardship programs in the U.S. states or jurisdictions that have passed paint stewardship laws. PaintCare is a program of the American Coatings Association (ACA), a membership-based trade association of the paint manufacturing industry. Working through the Paint Producer Stewardship Initiative, facilitated by the Product Stewardship Institute, ACA supported the passage of the nation’s first paint stewardship law in Oregon and established PaintCare in 2009.

Following the passage of similar laws, PaintCare has launched programs across the country in California, Colorado, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Maine, Minnesota, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, New York, and, most recently Illinois.

In those states, PaintCare encourages households and businesses to take their unwanted, leftover paint to a PaintCare drop-off site. Most of those drop-off sites are paint retailers in convenient locations, open year-round. Across the 11 PaintCare programs, there are more than 2,400 drop-off sites that have collected 66.5 million gallons of paint, provided 8,624 large-volume pickups and hosted 333 paint drop-off events.

PaintCare developed a series of public education posters about paint stewardship with the help of Illustrator duo, Peter and Maria Hoey. The posters are inspired by classic American mid-century graphic styles and feature PaintCare’s Paint Smarter messaging. They encourage paint consumers to buy the right amount of paint, store it carefully to avoid waste, use it up, give away the extra paint, and recycle the rest at PaintCare drop-off sites.

Thank you PaintCare for being a non-profit member and exhibitor at our 2023 Annual Conference!

Kane County is home to just over a half-million residents, situated about 45 miles west of Chicago. The County includes about 35 miles of the Fox River and several river cities, including Elgin to the north and Aurora to the south (both shared with other counties) and the tri-cities of Batavia, Geneva and St. Charles in between. The western part of the County is largely farmland, including corn and soybean production and many small horse farms.

Since its first Solid Waste Management Plan was adopted in 1992, Kane County Government has played an active role in reducing and recycling waste. The County Recycling Program licenses and collects annual tonnage data from all private haulers operating in the County. It also fosters the responsible disposal of multiple hard-to-recycle materials through its two permanent recycling drop-off centers and periodic recycling events. The largest event of the year, in least in terms of the number of materials accepted, is the Recycling Extravaganza, which just took place on July 22nd. For the Extravaganza, we set up eight stations in a circuit around the parking lot of our Circuit Clerk’s building, and collected everything from books and bicycles for reuse, to fluorescent bulbs and power tool batteries for recycling. We served 750 households. While our numbers for 2023 are still pending, we took in 26.6 tons of material during the Extravaganza last year, and expect this year to be similar.

Another long-standing hallmark of the program is the Kane County Recycles Green Guide, a printed 8-10 page booklet (printed on recycled paper, of course), which serves as our residents’ guide to all things recycling in the County. Coupled with our expansive website, these resources help all residents know how to recycle more and recycle properly, which is ever our goal. We skipped a year during our staffing transition, but the full-length Green Guide will return in early 2024.
Have You Missed an IRF Webinar?
Did You Miss the Recent OSHA Updates for Recycling Operations Webinar?

Our webinars are recorded and posted to our YouTube channel. Catch up on a past webinar at the following links:

Member News
Republic partners with Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola is first publicly named buyer of PET flake produced through plastics recycling facility being built by Republic in Las Vegas. Republic Services’ Polymer Centers will supply recycled PET to the Coca-Cola Company for use in sustainable packaging. Coca-Cola has pledged to use at least 50% recycled material in its packaging by 2030, and rPET flake produced by the Republic Polymer Centers will help achieve that goal. Republic’s nationwide collection, recycling and Polymer Center infrastructure, combined with their agreement with Coca-Cola, enables us to envision a true bottle-to-bottle circularity.
Thank you Republic, for your membership and support of the IRF.
LRS Growth Continues with the Acquisition of Environmental Recycling & Disposal and Moen Transfer Station

LRS announced the acquisition of Environmental Recycling & Disposal and Moen Transfer Station, a family-owned and operated business servicing some of the disposal and recycling needs of the Will County area for over 25 years. This transaction represents LRS’ continued investment in acquiring leading independent businesses across the Midwest and a serious step into the growing southwest suburban area of Northern Illinois. Read More
Legislative Update from IRA

With both the House and Senate on recess, many are watching for legislation to be signed by the Governor and releases from the Illinois Pollution Control Board. On July 6, they released Standards for General Construction or Demolition Debris Recovery Facilities. This effort for change was a result of legislation negotiated with our C&D members. It establishes rules for permitting, operating, and closing general construction or demolition debris recovery facilities.

We expect the Governor to sign the Paint Stewardship Act shortly, along with the Packaging bill highlighted in a webinar and at the conference.
A Note from the IRF President, Clair Ryan

It’s my distinct honor to introduce myself to the Illinois recycling community as IRF’s new Board President. I’ve spent my career in environmental management, during which my subject matter focus has varied from urban stormwater, agricultural non-point source pollution, watershed management, and invasive plant management to becoming a solid waste and recycling professional in December 2021. Over the intervening 18 months, I have learned an incredible amount about how Illinois recyclers are adapting and rising to meet varied challenges, and much of that learning has stemmed from interactions with IRF members, who collectively possess an incredible amount of knowledge and ingenuity when it comes to reducing, repurposing and recycling waste.
What I lack in experience in solid waste, I make up for with non-profit experience. Collectively, I’ve been a non-profit employee or contracted executive, similar to the position retained by IRF, for twelve and a half years. I believe there are a lot of opportunities for IRF to increase and diversify its funding base, to innovate and to improve value to its members. And of course, this will be done in recognition that our forward motion has been enabled by the past efforts of dedicated IRF Board membership and especially Board leaders. I very much look forward to meeting you. I can be reached with questions or for conversation at ryanclair@kane.co.il.us or (630) 208-3841.

IRF Board Executive Committee Elections
Following the elections at the annual meeting, held on June 13, 2023 as part of the annual conference, the IRF Board held a meeting of all 2022-23 Board members and 2023-24 Board members to transition to the new Board. During this meeting, held on Wednesday, July 12, the IRF Board elected the following members to the Executive Committee:

IRF Executive Committee
President: Clair Ryan
Vice President: Adena Rivas
Secretary: Anthony Tindall
Treasurer: Aaron Harmon
Past-President: Marta Keane

All board member profiles are available on the IRF website at www.illinoisrecycles.org

Thank You to Our 2023 Benefactors!

Consider adding your logo here. Become a 2023 BENEFACTOR for $2000.
If you have already joined and would like to upgrade to this status, send an email to executivedirector@illinoisrecycles.org
As an IRF member, you are eligible to participate in one or more of our active committees. These committees tend to meet four to six times a year. All committees are seeking new members to participate. We also welcome ideas from you on a committee that would further your goals.

A list of committees is shown below. For more information, please view committee descriptions. To join a committee please contact Sue Steilen.
C & D
Regional Outreach
Social Justice/Diversity
Textile Reuse
Traditional MRF
You can show off in a press release or simply show us your everyday operation. Either way, we can utilize your photos on social media and on our website. We are asking IRF Members to send photos of their recycling and collection operations. Pictures can be of office collection, residential drop-off, MRF sorting lines, curbside service, someone placing items in recycle bins, reuse events, compost operations, etc. Please send jpeg/jpg pictures to info@illinoisrecycles.org.

Over 1 million Chicago-area residents are now able to put paper cups in their curbside recycling bins. 
This option is now available to Chicagoans after LRS, which provides most of the city’s curbside recycling service, expanded its list of accepted materials to include paper cups.

Two companies are marketing chairs made from recycled content, and another two debuted lines of post-consumer polymers. 

The Foodservice Packaging Institute, the trade association for the foodservice packaging industry in North America, recently commissioned an audit on materials in the residential recycling stream to determine whether levels of food residue on foodservice packaging (i.e., pizza boxes, paper and plastic cups, clamshells, and aluminum trays) differed from food residue levels on food contact packaging items (i.e., paper ice cream tubs, peanut butter jars, and food cans) that are traditionally included in recycling programs. The study found that a vast majority of food contact and foodservice items in the recycling stream were rated as a level 1 (defined as clean packaging with no food residue) or a level 2 (defined as, clean packaging, with some crumbs or staining from oils). Read the full study summary here: FPI Food Residue Study 2022

Investigators from the Mizzou Asphalt Pavement and Innovation Lab (MAPIL) designed a real-world test road using recycled materials such as scrap tires and plastic waste along a portion of Interstate 155 in the Missouri Bootheel in collaboration with the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT). According to Bill Buttlar, Director of MAPIL, this innovative process can reduce the number of items ending up in landfills or leaking into the environment by enhancing the sustainability of asphalt mixes.
Educational Opportunities
Job Postings
Republic Services has a range of openings, visit their career website.

GDB International Environmental Health Safety Specialist, Nashville, IL

We encourage members to visit the IRF Membership Directory and find member's websites to see their job listings.
"One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty counsels.
~ Woodrow T Wilson


Illinois Recycling Foundation / Illinois Recycling Association, PO Box 411, Geneva IL 60134
708 358 0050